Learn to eliminate food waste in your kitchen, explore seasonal menus and try your hand at a classic Italian dessert.
According to the Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations (FAO), one third of food produced for human consumption is wasted globally, which amounts to about 1.3 billion tonnes of food lost per year. This is a sobering statistic in view of the fact that hunger remains an issue in several regions of the world. More food is wasted in developing or industrialised nations and these losses represent a waste of resources such as land, water and energy used in food production as well as an increase in greenhouse gas emissions.
Food waste is basically food that is discarded before being consumed. This relates not only to household food waste but to food lost through the various stages of its production and supply. For example, fruit that falls off a truck while being transported to a supermarket is considered food loss, as well as bruised produce that gets binned because they may not look appealing on a supermarket shelf.
By incorporating simple habits to prevent food wastage, we can do our bit to conserve energy and resources spent in the food production supply chain, support our local community by donating surplus food, reduce our carbon footprint, and save money by making the most of every dollar spent on buying food!
Reflect on the good you could be doing for the earth and someone in need before piling your plate with food you cannot possibly finish at a buffet or chucking a perfectly edible fruit in the bin because it is slightly bruised.
MAKE A LIST before heading to the market or grocers. Give your fridge and pantry the once over and only list items that you really need. Buying things from a list curbs impulse buys and saves you money too!
FREEZE extra fruit that you’ve bought in bulk to enjoy at another time. Fruits can be eaten months later, if stored properly. Pack peeled bananas and freshly-picked berries in freezer bags and simply defrost when you’re ready to consume them. This way, you’ll be able to enjoy seasonal fruits even when they’re no longer in season. Straight-from-the-freezer bananas are particularly good in smoothies.
THINK TWICE before chucking food scraps in the bin. Vegetable stems, prawn heads and chicken bones can bump up the flavour of soups and stocks. Make the most of these flavourful ingredients by adding them to a batch of homemade stock that can be frozen for use when necessary.
TRANSFORM LEFTOVERS from last night’s dinner by adding just a few extra ingredients to turn it into a completely different dish. Leftover rice can be stir-fried with vegetables for a quick meal; mashed potatoes can be combined with canned tuna and breadcrumbs (another leftover) and turned into tasty croquettes; and the Bolognese from last night’s supper will make a delicious filling for a toasted sandwich. Use your imagination and make the most of each meal!
REORGANIZE the contents of your fridge and pantry. Whenever you bring home groceries, be sure to move food items that are closer to their use by dates to the front where you can see them. Otherwise, items from previous grocery trips may remain at the back of your fridge and go bad before you get a chance to use them.
DONATE SURPLUS FOOD lying about in your pantry to a good cause. Dry items such as biscuits and canned food that are within their expiration dates will definitely be appreciated by your local food bank or soup kitchen. If you’re going out of town for several days and your fridge is stocked with fresh produce, give edible produce away to your neighbours, family or friends before you leave.
DID YOU KNOW?
Food scraps like vegetable and fruit peels, crushed eggshells and coffee grounds can be transformed into a nutrient-dense compost to feed your garden. Learn how to make your own compost at www.homecompostingmadeeasy.com
FAB FOOD FINDS
Chef Jocelyn Argaud from the Riverside Café, Four Seasons Resort Bali at Sayan, whips up French bistro fare inspired by family recipes on the banks of the Ayung river. Signature dishes include chicken Basquaise, chicken gently braised in a cast-iron pot with bell peppers, quail eggs and smoked duck jus; mushroom ravioli with goat’s cheese shavings; and wood-fired pear tart. The farm-to-table menu emphasises fresh flavours – vegetables and herbs are grown on-site – and locally sourced ingredients. www.fourseasons.com/sayan/dining/restaurants/riverside_cafe
Char & Co in Double Bay, Sydney, celebrates the big, bold flavours of South America with a menu featuring churrasco (spit-roasted) meats and seafood served with house-made sauces such as chimicurri and pico de gallo. Owner Bruno Da Motta shares his passion for meats grilled the Gaucho way in this cosy eatery that also serves South American-inspired burgers, sides and salads, desserts and specialty cocktails like passion fruit, chilli and basil caipiroska. charandco.com.au
Chocolate lovers in Malaysia rejoice! Premium chocolatier Godiva has recently launched its Chocolixir Collection – a range of tastebud-teasing chocolate beverages. Flavours include Classic Chocolate Decadence, an iced chocolate drink topped with freshly whipped cream and chocolate sauce; Creamy Apple Pie Chocolate, that marries the comforting flavours of apple pie and chocolate; and Classic Dark Chocolate Raspberry, a rich chocolate and raspberry jam combo topped with whipped cream. These indulgent treats are now available at Godiva outlets in Malaysia. www.godiva.my
Tiramisu literally means ‘pick-me-up’, a reference to the stimulating shot/s of espresso used in the dessert.
- 500g mascarpone cheese
- 500g whipping cream
- 5 eggs
- 250g caster sugar
- 24 savoiardi (Italian sponge fingers/ ladyfinger biscuits), halved
- 200ml coffee, preferably espresso
- 30g cocoa powder
- Chocolate shaving and pistachios for garnish
FOR THE MASCARPONE MOUSSE
- In a mixing bowl, whip cream until fluffy with soft peaks, and refrigerate for use later.
- Separate egg yolks and whites into two mixing bowls. Add 100g of sugar into the bowl containing the egg yolks and 150g of sugar into the bowl with the whites.
- Beat egg yolks and sugar until pale and thick (about three to four minutes), add the mascarpone and beat for a further 30 seconds to incorporate the cheese.
- Whip egg whites and sugar till thick and snow white.
- Using a spatula, fold in the refrigerated whipped cream into the cheese mixture, little by little.
- Lastly, fold in the whipped egg whites and sugar mixture.
- Transfer the mascarpone mousse into a piping bag.
- Soak halved sponge fingers in coffee.
- Place a coffee-infused sponge finger at the bottom of a martini glass.
- Pipe a layer of mascarpone mousse to cover the biscuit.
- Repeat the process by alternating between the sponge fingers and mousse until the glass is filled to your liking.
- Dust with cocoa powder and garnish with chocolate shavings and chopped pistachios.
RECIPE COURTESY OF SHERATON IMPERIAL KUALA LUMPUR